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Trip to Europe

Ash
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Post by Ash » Fri April 24th, 2009, 2:03 pm

[quote=""juleswatson""]Ash, I think you are thinking of Fishbourne Palace near Chichester on the south coast, West Sussex. If you are into Romans, it is one of the best sites in the UK, loads of mosaics and a museum. There is also another lovely little Roman villa - the Bignor Roman Villa - nearby at Pulborough, also West Sussex. Both are fantastic.[/quote]

Yep, thats it! I think thats where the painted house was I also remember going to Bignor. Where was the site that had to bury much of its excavations because of highway development? (Douglas Adams started his Hitchiker Guide with a similar situation, much funnier)

Wales is doable, but personally I'd go to Hay on Wye, the biggest book town in the world! (also two hours from London).

http://www.hay-on-wye.co.uk/info/about_hay.asp

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Tanzanite
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Post by Tanzanite » Fri April 24th, 2009, 2:19 pm

[quote=""Ash""]Yep, thats it! I think thats where the painted house was I also remember going to Bignor. Where was the site that had to bury much of its excavations because of highway development? (Douglas Adams started his Hitchiker Guide with a similar situation, much funnier)

Wales is doable, but personally I'd go to Hay on Wye, the biggest book town in the world! (also two hours from London).


http://www.hay-on-wye.co.uk/info/about_hay.asp[/quote]

He's probably draw the line at wandering a bunch of book stores too! I can't make him too cranky. :)

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Madeleine
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Post by Madeleine » Fri April 24th, 2009, 7:41 pm

[quote=""Ash""]Yep, thats it! I think thats where the painted house was I also remember going to Bignor. Where was the site that had to bury much of its excavations because of highway development? (Douglas Adams started his Hitchiker Guide with a similar situation, much funnier)

Wales is doable, but personally I'd go to Hay on Wye, the biggest book town in the world! (also two hours from London).

http://www.hay-on-wye.co.uk/info/about_hay.asp[/quote]

Mmm, 2 hours are you sure? I'm assuming you'll be going by train?

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diamondlil
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Post by diamondlil » Fri April 24th, 2009, 10:42 pm

I would agree on going to Avebury as opposed to going to Stonehenge. At Avebury you can wander through the stones and for me it was much more powerful than Stonehenge.
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Julianne Douglas
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Post by Julianne Douglas » Fri April 24th, 2009, 11:36 pm

[quote=""cw gortner""]Hampton Court is a short train ride from London and, in my opinion, not to be missed. One of the most beautiful, extant 16th century palaces in Europe and the only Tudor one. You must go. You'll fall in love with it.[/quote]

Christopher, Hampton Court was my absolute favorite place in England, too! I'm sure seeing HC at the tender age of 16 did a lot to foster my life-long love of the Renaissance.
Julianne Douglas

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Ash
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Post by Ash » Sat April 25th, 2009, 1:36 am

[quote=""Madeleine""]Mmm, 2 hours are you sure? I'm assuming you'll be going by train?[/quote]

We went everywhere by train; I'm thinking thats right, but I've been known to be wrong about times before.

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Post by Chatterbox » Sat April 25th, 2009, 3:20 am

Hay on Wye is one of my favorite places on earth, but it is NOT a day trip. First you get to Hereford, and then you will either have to rent a car or take a local bus (they only run a few times a day...) I have had to hitchhike from Hereford to Hay after missing a bus due to a train delay.

Personally, I think Wales is just too far for a day trip, generally. The most interesting parts (esp for Penman fans) are in the north, say north and west of Betws-y-Coed in Snowdonia. You would end up feeling rushed & exhausted.

I'd suggest combining Cambridge and Ely, which I have done in a day. Ely has a fabulous Norman cathedral, and lots of historical associations dating back to the resistance to the Norman invasion of 1066.

For castles, Warwick Castle used to be a good place to go. For ancient & thoroughly refurbished and beautiful -- try Leeds Castle. I personally like Arundel.

Try Rye, Hastings and some of the towns there. I think that Canterbury should be manageable. You could combine a day trip to Hever and Penshurst Place in Kent, if you hire a car & driver (or arrange for taxi to meet you at train stations and chauffeur you from point A to point B).

Oxford is a great day trip, also.

But as soon as you start thinking of Worcester/Gloucester/Hereford, you are into changing trains, which is problematic.

In the area of London, don't forget Kew Gardens. As well as the gardens themselves (utterly gorgeous at this time of year, with the bluebells & rhododendrons) you have the former Royal palace and Queen Charlotte's cottage. Go on a Sunday, and you can have tea in the gardens, or exit by Kew Green in the afternoon, buy your tea (homemade cakes) from the church on the Green, and consume while watching the local cricket players strut their stuff. You can take the boat there along the Thames (embark at Westminster, it takes a few hours) and then the train or tube back to central London.

If you're going bookshopping, Hatchard's has a section dedicated to historical fiction on its main floor. As does, I think, the massive Waterstone's. Both on Piccadilly, between P. Circus and the Ritz, on the same side as Fortnum & Mason.

In London: Go for a walk along the South Bank, all the way along to Bermondsey. Great to do on a Saturday afternoon when the weather is nice. Spectacular river views. Check out the Victoria & Albert museum and the museum of London (too often overlooked). Have a meal in Samuel Johnson's hangout, Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, on Fleet Street. (Just a short amble from St. Paul's Cathedral). Sir John Soane's Museum, north of the Law Courts, is a fabulous mishmash of antiquities, Hogarth etchings, etc. If you want restaurant tips, send me a PM.

Would you pack me in your suitcase, please? ;)

Ash
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Post by Ash » Sat April 25th, 2009, 3:07 pm

Now that you mention it - I think we did have to change trains at Hereford. Never mind (/Emily Littela persona) And yeah, make your next trip just Wales, and Ireland.

Oh, Kew Gardens was a marverlous visit. Also check out Greenwich; esp if you've read Dana Sobel's Longitude. It has all of the old original ship clocks, as well as some old ships.

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Sat April 25th, 2009, 3:55 pm

Nobody has mentioned Belvoir Castle, near Nottingham. It was one of the highlights of my tour of England -- they have an incredible art gallery, the original Holbein portrait of Henry VIII (the famous one with arms akimbo) is there. They also use the place for all kinds of re-enactments, if any of them fit your schedule.
Have a good time!

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Post by EC2 » Sat April 25th, 2009, 4:21 pm

[quote=""MLE""]Nobody has mentioned Belvoir Castle, near Nottingham. It was one of the highlights of my tour of England -- they have an incredible art gallery, the original Holbein portrait of Henry VIII (the famous one with arms akimbo) is there. They also use the place for all kinds of re-enactments, if any of them fit your schedule.
Have a good time![/quote]

Belvoir's in my neck of the woods - as in about 12 miles away. but I don't know how you'd be fixed for getting there without a car. Trains to Nottingham from London are regular and it only takes 1hr 45 mins, but then Belvoir is sort of out in the middle of nowhere, so you'd need a hire car - local bus service is crappety crap. It is a fine castle though. I haven't been in a while (isn't that always the case with things local).
Sorry I haven't been putting in many ideas. Venues within striking distance of London aren't my strong point. I'd have said Ludlow, but it's probably too far. Great castle and the foodie capital of England and with Stokesay Castle not far away, but you really need a car I guess. Oxford isn't that far away by rail. As others have said, Bath is excellent.
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